There is no doubt that the death of Australian test cricketer Phil Hughes is a tragedy, of the likes the sport has seldom seen before.
The South Australian batsman was struck in the head on Tuesday during the Sheffield Shield game against New South Wales at the SCG. The 25-year-old spent two days in a critical state in hospital before dying yesterday.
Suddenly, everything else in the game became irrelevant. Who cares who wins or loses when someone has died?
Sport has become more and more professional over the years, but no one deserves to die playing any game. And even the fiercest competitors at any level would not wish any opponent to die as a result of how they played the game. One has to feel for the poor NSW fast bowler Sean Abbott, whose bouncer struck Hughes beneath his batting helmet.
The young man was simply playing cricket to the best of his ability and now he has to live with this terrible memory for the rest of his life.
Hughes was a promising young player who had already proved himself at the highest level. He also had his whole life ahead of him and the sport will be poorer without him. There is no doubt his family will never be whole again.
However, as tragic as this event is, it is not the fault of cricket. It is not the fault of bouncers. It is not the fault of the hard balls and it is certainly not the fault of fast bowlers like Abbott. It was a freak accident that saw the ball strike him on the back of the head.
There will be inevitable calls for stricter rules in cricket and that is probably a process that needs to be followed.
However, I am sure I am safe in saying that Phil Hughes would not have wanted anything to change in his beloved game as a result of his death.